Stafne Defect

其他名称:Lingual Mandibular Salivary Gland Depression, Latent Bone Cyst, Static Bone Cyst.


Circumscribed radiolucency located below the mandibular canal near the inferior border of the mandible. (from Color Atlas of Oral and Maxillofacial Diseases)

Large radiolucency near the angle of the posterior mandible. (from Color Atlas of Oral and Maxillofacial Diseases)

Axial computed tomography image showing a cupped-out defect on the lingual surface of the mandible (arrow). (from Color Atlas of Oral and Maxillofacial Diseases)

Anterior Stafne defect associated with the sublingual gland. The lesion appears as a well-circumscribed corticated radiolucency apical to the right mandibular premolars. (from Color Atlas of Oral and Maxillofacial Diseases)

A Stafne defect is an uncommon radiographic anomaly of the mandible characterized by a cupped-out depression of the bony cortex adjacent to a major salivary gland. The lesion usually is related to the submandibular gland, although rare examples associated with the sublingual and parotid glands also have been described. Although Stafne defects generally are thought to be “developmental” in nature, they rarely are encountered in children, which indicates that these bony concavities gradually develop over time in adult patients. The posterior lingual submandibular type has been discovered on 0.08% to 0.48% of panoramic radiographs. There is a marked male predilection, with 80% to 90% of cases seen in men.
Stafne defects are asymptomatic lesions that typically are discovered as incidental findings on conventional dental radiographs. The classic posterior submandibular type appears as a well-circumscribed, corticated radiolucency near the angle of the mandible below the mandibular canal. On occasion, the lesion may involve the inferior border of the mandible, resulting in a palpable notch in this area. Anterior sublingual gland defects present as well-circumscribed radiolucencies located apical to the premolar or anterior teeth. Such a lesion may be mistaken for periapical pathosis. Exceedingly rare parotid examples may produce a radiolucency higher in the mandibular ramus. Computed tomography (CT), such as cone-beam CT, can be helpful to confirm that a suspected Stafne defect represents a cortical concavity rather than some other intrabony lesion.
Once discovered, a Stafne defect usually remains stable in size—hence the term static bone cyst. However, if discovered early enough in its formation, it is possible to see radiographic evidence of enlargement over time before the lesion becomes stable. No treatment is warranted for Stafne defects, and the prognosis is excellent.

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